Milkshape 3d - Mad3d exporter

This is the Mad3d exporter for Milkshape 3d which greatly helps the community mod the game. I've tried it in my own version of Milkshape 3d...


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This is the Mad3d exporter for Milkshape 3d which greatly helps the community mod the game. I've tried it in my own version of Milkshape 3d and the plugin works this and you have a nice pulgin to worth with :D

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Milkshape 3d Mad3d export 
plugin v 0.4b by Justin Cornell
aka Moonraker Feb 4, 2007 

--Use and installation:

Install to your milkshape directory.

To export a model, select export->Legacy M3d.


-Hardpoints/Nodes: It is important to make sure that your model is equipped with 
correct hardpoints/nodes. If you are familliar with modelling for games such as 
Armada you will notice that this is very similar. Each ship needs to have a 
hardpoint/node hieracrhy set up as follows:

scene root
		'- root
		    |   |
		    |   '-lod0
		    |      |
		    |      '-hull0
		    |         |
		    |         '-[mesh nodes]
		    |              |
		    |              |-oreintation (?)
		    |              '-break (optional, used when this part breaks off)
		    |                  |
		    |                  '-[emitter nodes]
		    |	|
		    |	|-borg
		    |	|-sheild
		    |	|-sensors
		    |	|-target
		    |	|-engines
		    |	'-crew
		    |	|
		    |	'-[weapons hardpoints]
		    	'-[light nodes]
In addition, for quick importing, the exporter will attempt to create a
basic hardpoint or node structure if your scene contains NO hardpoint
joints. If your scene does contain hp joints, it will attempt to
interpret them. The setup has been purposely formatted to be similar to
the .sod exporters for milkshape, so it should be easy for someone
who already knows how to make proper sod files, or for importing hardpoints
or sod models.

The hardpoints have a few types, so there is a naming convention used here:

Node names with a preceeding 's_' are sprite nodes, commonly the blinker
lights on the models. For example 's_whitestrobe'.

Node names with a preceeding 'e_' are emitter nodes, these are for
particle fountains. For example 'e_steamsml'.(not fully tested)

Node names with a preceeding 'm_' are mesh nodes, you will need ones of
these for each group in your scene, it must match the group name. For
example 'm_saucer' goes with group 'saucer'.

Node names with a preceeding 'h_' are hardpoint nodes, but you dont
really need the 'h_'. Any node with no prefix is interpreted as this
node type. This type is used for weapons and systems points.

Sprite nodes may be manipulated with extended data to control color and blink 
rate for certain lights. To do this, enter the values in the comments area for 
the joint. For example 'lcolor_148_54_46;' or 'lpattern_.1_.5_2_5_2_5;' or even 
both like 'lcolor_148_54_46;lpattern_.1_.5_2_5_2_5;'.

In order to preserve hardpoint firing direction in milkshape, you must
select the joint, and create a child joint that will be moved in the
direction you wish this hardpoint to fire. By default Milkshape will
name the joint 'jointxx'. You do not need to rename this, anything named
'joint' will be ignored by the m3d exporter.


Materials will be defined by certain naming conventions within Ms3d. The
materials will be set up like any Ms material, and read into the export
by certain key names.

Key Prefixes:

!phong_    = enables phong shading. ex. '!phong_top'
!constant_ = enables constant shading. ex. '!constant_side'
!lambert_  = enables lambert shading. ex. '!lambert_bottom'

If no key prefixes are found, the exporter defaults to phong shading.

Key names:
These can exist anywhere in the material name

trans_ = makes this an alpha transparent material, as opposed to using
the alpha for illumination. ex. '!phong_trans_material' or
anim_ = uses animated textures. ex. 'anim_housing'
in_= this will be set up as a damage material. ex. 'in_damage'
default = also interpreted as a damage material

Texture identifiers:
These will cause the model to try and load other texture effects. To do
this, it looks for maps matching the diffuse map with the appropriate
ending, i.e. 'yourmap_spec', 'yourmap_bump', 'yourmap_glow'.

!s = enables specular texture. ex '!phong_hull_!s'
!b = enables bump texture.
!g = enables glow texture. (may not be needed, but in there for safety)

-Known issues:

There are some bugs. First of all i don't know everything about this
format structure, I've been pretty much making educated guesses as to
what the game engine wants to see in the files. The specular lighting is
not completed, you can use it, but it tends to disable or move shadows
from the ship. The sprites may show through the hull at times, i don't
know exactly what to do to fix this yet, but I'm working on it.


There may be many of you who don't see the point in this exporter, since
the game engine can differentiate Armada sod files, however the sod
files are very limited and do not allow a lot of the things I've
mentioned and implemented here. Glows from other objects and ships wont
show through the m3d models, and overall performance may increase from
using them. Once the few small bugs I have get worked out, we can add
full-featured models.

I've included a sample set of hardpoints in ms3d ascii format, import those
to see the general setup.

Have fun! You can re-distribute this file if you want. All rights reserved of course.

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